Left-wing groups want a Kentucky judge ousted for refusing to accept adoption cases from same-sex couples, and a judicial commission could take action soon.
Family Court Judge W. Mitchell Nance, of Barren and Metcalfe counties, announced last week that he won’t accept cases involving adoption or foster care by same-gender couples, saying it is never in the best interest of a child to be placed in an unnatural parenting relationship.
Martin Cothran, senior policy analyst with the Family Foundation of Kentucky, says the ACLU and Lamda Legal are the two primary groups filing a complaint against Judge Nance with the Judicial Conduct Commission.
In addition, demonstrations are being held at the courthouse.
“They're filing the complaint about an action the judge is required by law to do, namely to recuse himself from cases in which his opinions might be biased,” Cothran explains. “And so we fully support that decision by the judge.”
Nance presides in a rural area where such cases would be few and there are other courts that will handle them.
Cothran is concerned about Judge Nance’s prospects before the commission.
“The problem that we have with the Judicial Ethics Commission is, if they were to rule against Judge Nance in this case, it would be the second time in recent months that the commission would have censured a judge who was doing exactly what the law says he should do,” he says.
Cothran is referring to Family Court Judge Tim Philpot, who was reprimanded for making married couples with children attend special court sessions to determine if the marriage was truly beyond repair.
Philpot was also accused of providing information on cases for academic research and teaching purposes.